Sunrise Bay reunion! Inside the scandalous Schitt's Creek soap opera drama
Warning: This article contains spoilers from Schitt's Creek season 6, episode 10, "Sunrise, Sunset."
Moira relived the highs and lows of her soap opera heyday on Sunrise Bay during this week's episode of Schitt's Creek.
In a guest appearance, Victor Garber made his debut on the Creek as Clifton Sparks, Moira's former costar on the show-within-a-show who's looking to reboot the sudser. On the latest installment of the EW On Set podcast, we go inside the this reunion of soap stars — and also the reunions for Eugene Levy (John) and Catherine O'Hara (Moira), who worked with Garber in a Toronto production of Godspell and sketches on Second City Television, respectively.
According to Levy, who created Schitt's Creek with son Dan Levy (David on the show), he initially thought of Garber for the role of Artie, the older man Alexis (Annie Murphy) dates in the episode "Rebound."
"I went up to Dan and I said, 'What about Victor Garber for this role?' And he said, 'I'm thinking of Victor for the other role, for the… former co-star in Sunrise Bay,'" Levy recalls. "And I said, 'Wow, that's great. That is great.' I mean, not only because I just love Victor and we started out in the same show together like in 1972." That would be Godspell, for which Levy auditioned and found himself giving Garber a standing ovation — as was everyone else in the room — for his audition. "I love the fact that we were working together again, and he loves the show," he continues. "He's a fan of the show, and he was so excited when we offered this part to him and he just killed it. He was so great in it."
The 10th episode of the final season, "Sunrise, Sunset," sees Clifton re-enter Moira's life with Sunrise Bay executive producer Tippy Bernstein (Hunters star Saul Rubinek) in an attempt to get her on board for the reboot. But as Alexis, still in a breakup emotional haze, points out, Moira is the only one of the original cast still making headlines, and there's a fan theory that Clifton was the reason Moira was written off the show back in the day. The revelation leads to a lot of slaps against Clifton, more wigs, and well-deserved demands from Moira. It also features a moment of Alexis watching Moira and Clifton act in an old episode of Sunrise Bay.
"When we actually did the soap opera scene, he said it was like doing [an SCTV] sketch together, and it was," O'Hara says of Garber. "This cheesy little half of a set, just a bit of a hallway, and it was fun. Really fun. He's great."
"I did get the great pleasure of being there at the table read when Victor called in from L.A.," Murphy recalls. "His voice was coming through an iPhone in a fruit bowl right in front of me. So it was like there was a tiny little Victor Garber sitting on the table right in front of me. And he came in swinging. He just absolutely committed to the character right out of the gate and had everyone cackling at the read. He really owned it. He clearly really connected with this character."
Listen to the full episode of EW On Set in the player above, or wherever you download and stream podcasts.